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December exports hit as Reliance shuts refinery; imports shrink on lower gold demand

New Delhi, Jan 10 (PTI): India's exports in December added up to $26.3 billion, an increase of 3.49 per cent over the figure for the same month of 2012, while imports dipped 15.25 per cent to $36.4 billion in the same month.

Growth in exports was slower than in November, when exports rose by 5.86 per cent. In December 2012, imports were $43 billion.

Commerce Secretary S R Rao said export growth slowed mainly because of a drop in petroleum exports.

“It is only one product group which has contributed to (slower growth in exports) and that is petroleum products,” he told reporters here.

There was an unplanned maintenance shutdown at Reliance Industries, one of the country's largest exporters, Rao said.

The lower imports helped to narrow the trade deficit to $10.1 billion in December compared with $17.5 billion in the same period of 2012.

Gold and silver imports in December dropped to $1.77 billion from $5.6 billion a year earlier, although they were higher than $1.05 billion in November.

For the April-December period, exports added up to $230.3 billion and imports $340.3 billion while the trade deficit was $110 billion.


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